Journalist Pete O’Rourke believes West Ham United manager David Moyes will look to move on a number of the club’s fringe players this summer as he attempts to bring in new faces.
Last season was a huge success for the Hammers as they finished in sixth place to qualify for the Europa League, and this campaign has been just as impressive. The Irons remain in the hunt for another European spot and have reached the quarter-finals of Europe’s second club competition.
Do you expect many outgoings this summer?
What may have prevented them from scaling even bigger heights is their lack of transfer business. Kurt Zouma and Nikola Vlasic were the only significant bits of business during last summer’s transfer window, and despite the obvious need for a back-up striker to Michail Antonio, no centre-forward arrived in January.
West Ham have a relatively small squad amongst Premier League outfits, but asked whether Moyes would move on several peripheral players such as Issa Diop and Arthur Masuaku at the end of the campaign, O’Rourke expects the Hammers boss to be ruthless.
He told GiveMeSport: “If he can offload some of the fringe players in the squad to make room in his squad, I’m sure it is something he would definitely look at, and it would also boost his own warchest for the summer transfer window as well.”
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While O’Rourke did not mention Issa Diop and Arthur Masuaku explicitly, they could easily be up for the chop if Moyes decides to trim his squad.
Between them, the two have made 43 appearances in all competitions this term, although just 30 have been starts. Clearly, Moyes favours others ahead of them in their respective positions, and they are therefore suitable candidates if the Irons do need to raise funds before improving their squad.
Perhaps some of the club’s issues lie in their poor previous transfer decisions. For example, West Ham made a £32m loss on Felipe Anderson when they sold him to Lazio – the club from which they signed him for a then club-record fee – while they recorded a £25m loss on another club-record purchase, Sebastien Haller.
Such deals, when coupled with the pandemic, have undoubtedly hampered West Ham’s power in the transfer market.
Ultimately, the east London outfit need to add to their squad rather than reduce it, especially if they embark on another European adventure. A strong end to the season may provide the funds Moyes needs anyway.